Disability, General, Retirement, SSI, Survivors

Reporting Changes is Your Responsibility

December 10, 2015 • By

Last Updated: August 19, 2021

a picture of a hand on a laptop keyboard. If you receive benefits from Social Security, you have a legal obligation to report changes, which could affect your eligibility for disability, retirement, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. You must report any changes that may affect your benefits immediately, and no later than 10 days after the end of the month in which the change occurred.

Changes you need to report range from a change of address to traveling outside the United States for 30 consecutive days. To get a list of reporting responsibilities under disability, please read our publication What You Need to Know When You get Social Security Disability Benefits, and for SSI, read What You Need to Know When You Get Supplemental Security Income. If you’re receiving retirement benefits, What You Need to Know When You Get Retirement or Survivors Benefits is also helpful.

Life changes can affect your benefits. You may be due additional payments, or you may be overpaid and have to pay us back because you didn’t report the overpayment in a timely manner. The SSI program may apply a penalty that will reduce your benefits if you fail to report a change, or if you reported the change later than 10 days after the end of the month in which the change occurred. If you fail to report changes in a timely way, or if you intentionally make a false statement, we may stop your SSI, disability, and retirement benefits. We may also impose a sanction against your payments. The first sanction is a loss of payments for six months. Subsequent sanctions are for 12 and 24 months.

You can report your change online at www.socialsecurity.gov, or by calling toll free at 1-800-772-1213. If you’re deaf or hearing-impaired call TTY 1-800-325-0778. Mail the information to your local Social Security office or in person if you prefer. If you receive SSI, you should ask about our options to use the automated toll-free SSI Telephone Wage Reporting Service or the free SSI Mobile Wage Reporting Smartphone app.

If you receive benefits and need to change your address or direct deposit, you can conveniently do so by creating a my Social Security account at www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.

Get the right check, in the right amount, at the right time, by reporting changes right away!


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About the Author

Deputy Commissioner, Office of Communications

Comments

  1. Beverly w.

    I have been trying to find out if I qualify for ssi but I can’t find out any information I am 63 yrs old can you please help me.

    Thank you for help in this matter.

    Beverly wadsworth

    • Ray F.

      Hi Beverly! The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program pays benefits to people with limited income and resources who are: Age 65 or older; Blind; or Disabled. Please read our publication about the SSI program for more information, including how to apply.

  2. Brenda S.

    I have sent the proper paperwork for my IRMAA event, due to reduction in payroll. Was sent to local SS office and was told I had 60 days to notify you of this. Still waiting for response from them.

  3. lashanna M.

    Been waiting for a court date to go before an administration law judge its been almost 2 years since I applied for my benefits still no court date

    • carolyn

      Same happened to me , 2 years before getting hearing and then 60 days after for judge to give decision . then months later will get a check then a bunch of mail , still waiting all funds. good luck be patient! i know its hard

      • mary

        It took me three years and innumerable doctor visits but I finally got it and the retro payment and monthly payment came right away after that.

    • Summer

      I was very fortunate that my attorney got my case finalized in 2 1/2 years, my sister, waited 7 years and did not use an attorney. I recommend using an attorney. I was homeless in Michigan, it got mighty cold on some winter nights. Have you tried checking your claim status online, SSA’s website is https://www.ssa.gov or try calling SSA? I use the website for everything, I hate waiting on the phone for hours the last time I called or went in.

  4. Cheryl J.

    How much money can you earn annually prior to the age of 65 if you are getting social security?

    • Steve

      I have been informed that I can earn up to 14,000 then SSA will take back 1 dollar for every 2 dollars earned after 14,000.

      • Ray F.

        Hi Steve. You can still work and receive your Social Security retirement benefits at the same time. However, if you are younger than full retirement age and make more than the yearly earnings limit, we will reduce your benefit. If you are under full retirement age for the entire year, we deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2015 that limit is $15,720. This limit changes in the year you reach full retirement age. To learn more, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions web page or read “How Work Affects Your Benefits”. If you have questions, please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. and talk with one of our representatives.

        • Carol

          Do those limits apply if I were fortunate enough to win the lottery? If I were to win, say, $20,000, Would I lose my Social Security? If I were lucky enough to win, every cent of my winnings would have to go to get me out the immense debt I’m in.

          • Ray F.

            The limits mentioned before apply only to wages. Winning the lottery will not affect your Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits which are paid based on your previous work and your contributions into the Social Security program. Benefits paid under the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, on the other hand, are subject to other income and resources. Lottery winnings will affect SSI benefits
            Good luck!

        • Dez

          What if you have a vision impairment

    • Ray F.

      For 2015 that limit is $15,720. If you are under full retirement age for the entire year, we deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. To learn more, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions web page or read “How Work Affects Your Benefits”.

  5. Timothy C.

    I went to sign on to my account today. I clicked on forgot my password. I entered all of the items requested. The answer came back, as saying we cannot find an account for you.

    I went in to create an account, and it said, an account already exists. What gives. Do I have an account or don’t I ?

    • Ray F.

      Hello Timothy ! We are sorry you are having difficulty with your personal my Social Security account. For assistance, please call 1-800-772-1213. After you hear “Briefly tell me why you are calling,” say “Help Desk” for help with a my Social Security account. Sometimes, it might be best to visit your local Social Security office for further assistance.

      • ConcernedParent

        Will my SSI stop if fail to update my address? I actually forgot to call in in the midst of moving and noticed I did not receive payment this month. What can I do at this point because I am in a bind.

    • Sue B.

      I’m having the SAME problem! Says account can’t be verified. I emailed to let SS know and still have not got an answer. How do we sign in now?

      • Ray F.

        Hello Sue. We are sorry you are having difficulty with your personal my Social Security account. For assistance, please call 1-800-772-1213. After you hear “Briefly tell me why you are calling,” say “Help Desk” for help with a my Social Security account. Sometimes, it might be best to visit your local Social Security office for further assistance.

  6. Evelyn b.

    I had a problem recieving my benefits,and the social security people helped me to straighten it out.they were patient and kind so thank you very much

    • Ray F.

      We’re glad we can help! We are committed to providing the public with the best service possible, and it’s wonderful to know our efforts are paying off. Thanks for your comment.

      • pura

        Iam an 80 year old woman living in another county other than the u.s.a. i have a direct deposit where i withdraw from.iam constently being threatened from the american counsolate that my passport and s.s benefits will be taken away .what can I do thats all i have

        • Ray F.

          Unfortunately, but for your security, we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please continue working with your local U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance.

        • Tom

          Pura, what is the basis of these threats?

      • James D.

        I called yesterday to do a review over the phone and everything got settled but my check is still not in my savings account why?

        • Ray F.

          Hi James. For security reasons, we do not have access to personal records via this blog. Please continue working with your local office or call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, representatives are available Monday through Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Thanks.

          • Sue P.

            Ray
            You are very kind and and patient with your
            responses

          • Ray F.

            We appreciate your thoughts. Thanks for your comment!

          • Junior

            Hello I have been receiving benefits since the death of my father when I was 8, im now 18, but I’m still in high school, I was receiving the benefit with my mom as a payee, now I can get them on my own, they cut me off saying that my school form 1372 is their and has been since November 2016 but hasn’t been scanned in the system or updated, now I have not received my January 2017 pay, and I moved, but I updated my address last month, but I still am not paid, I did eveyteverythincorrect, and I still don’t know what to do, do i wait to be put back on the payment systems or keep calling, I can’t create a on line account either, it says I can’t do one at this time, please give me any advice for a 18 yr old that’s still in high school !!!!

  7. Joseph G.

    where can I get examples of changes that need to be reported? How about a change in marital status? Article leaves more questions than it answers….

  8. David l.

    I have already gone to social securitywebsite.gov. and put in a change of address but if for some reason it did not take

    • MJ

      You can report your change online at http://www.socialsecurity.gov, or by calling toll free at 1-800-772-1213.

      • Susan

        NO YOU CANNOT CHANGE YOUR ADDRESS ONLINE OR AT THE SS OFFICE UNLESS YOU ARE RECEIVING BENEFITS. Found out the hard way by waiting more than 2 hours to speak to a rep who verified this. Talked w/a Supervisor who also verified this. Unbelievable that I cannot have my mail (earnings statement) sent to my correct address. They insist that it must go to the wrong address! I hated today dealing with them.

    • Ray F.

      Hi David, please be cautious about posting personal information on social media. About changing your address: If you are not yet receiving benefits you don’t need to change your address with us at this time. If you do receive Social Security benefit you can create a my Social Security account to change your address and manage your benefits. You can also mail the change of address to your local Social Security office, or you can update your address by calling our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). Representatives are available Monday through Friday between 7:00a.m. and 7:00p.m. Generally, you’ll have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week.

      • Rochelle

        Im disable i have been living like dog its about to get 36 degress outside i have no place to sleep take bath my claim is still the same when u all approved in 2006 2017 im sudic,biplar ,sch,spine injury are having serious problem plese help me i m. Sleeping

        • Ray F.

          You may be eligible to receive social services from the state that you live Rochelle. These services include Medicaid, free meals, housekeeping help, transportation or help with other problems. You can get information about services in your area from your state or local social services or welfare office. please visit the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) web page for more information.

      • Susan

        What if I would like to receive my Social Security Statement, Form SSA-7005-SM-SI at my CORRECT address? spent hours w/reps at local SS Office and they all said the same thing; you cannot have your mail from SSA coming to your correct address. Stupid.

      • Michael

        Hello, I am a representative payee for my mother on ssi. I called to change her address twice. The first time was about a month ago and the second time about two weeks ago. When I log in to the social security my account page, it still has the old address. I have not received anything in the mail about it either. Generally speaking, about how long does it usually take for a change of address to go through and show up on the my account page? Also, how long would it normally take to receive a letter confirming the address change? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

  9. Carl

    Why we want be getting a cost of living raise

    • Barbara

      Because the government are nothing but, a bunch of thieves.

      • Barbara

        Never trust the United States Government. They are not here to help hard working Americans. They are here to help the illegals with our money.

        • Kimberly S.

          Actually illegal immigants are responsible for adding about 300000000 dollars to the social security fund. They pay into a system they will never receive money from knowingly.If you are going to make statements about others they should be based on fact.

          • Tom

            Ms. Schlage is exactly right. I prepared tax returns for several years in a neighborhood with a high percentage of undocumented aliens. I personally witnessed tens of thousands of dollars in FICA contributions from payers that will never collect a dime of those contributions.

          • wayne

            Illegal means-not lawful-you must be college educated because you don’t know that-also illegals pump Billions of dollars a year out of our country in a lot of ways that college kids don’t know or understand-it’s called “sucking us dry”, and it will work-we are borrowing from Japan, China, and the elites of this country to support not only all the illegals but also the rest of the world-and one day when your portion of the National Debt is due (which is now about $250,000) and you don’t have it -you will be an indentured servant (ward of the state) and you will work off your debt-and again the word illegal means not legal. Or do you like them; not understand simple English????

          • Connie C.

            True statement!

        • wayne

          You got that right-the M&M’s- Muslims and Mexicans. But they also love the Russians,the Chinese,and every other animal they can get to come here and help them to break us Spiritually, Physically, Emotionally, and most importantly-Financially.

      • Sheilq

        Do you vote?

  10. Frances G.

    I have been trying to make an appointment with SS but can never get thru. I have some very important questions.

    Thank you

    • MJ

      You can report your change online at http://www.socialsecurity.gov, or by calling toll free at 1-800-772-1213.

      • Joyce W.

        I’ve been trying that number for A LONG TIME. It’s always busy!!!

        • makethislookawesome

          Where on socialsecurity.gov? I tried searching for “report change in income” and got here. Your link (url) is not complete.

          • CElam

            Did they ever answer you? I am having the same problem

          • Ray F.

            If you receive benefits and need to make changes, such as change your address or direct deposit, you can conveniently do so by creating a my Social Security account at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.

      • Susan

        You can ONLY change your address if you are receiving benefits from Social Security or Medicare. You CANNOT change your address otherwise. Tried today and it does not make sense but I spoke with 3 persons at Social Security Administration; same answer. Ugh…government sucks

      • Annette P.

        If some one don’t live at the address they get check at how do u turn them in the person’s name is Virgil Howell he don’t leave at 350 ne Cheshire ln no moresee

    • Ray F.

      Hi Frances, we are sorry to hear that you are having difficulty reaching someone by phone. We are experiencing higher than normal call volume. Representatives are available on Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. at 1-800-772-1213. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call during the week after Tuesday. Members of the public who are deaf or hard of hearing should call the Agency’s toll-free TTY number at 1-800-325-0778.

      • Yessenia R.

        Hi! My father has retired in another country and his SS check is sent to him over there and my younger brother also receives a check from SS on behalf of my father, but my brother has turned 18 and no longer receives a check and my father wanted me to call you guys and ask if he will be recieving in his check what my brother was receiving at one point?

      • Adette

        What if my sis listed her husband as the recipient of her retirement ,but his husband left her.Can the husband claim the retirement after my sis died

    • linda

      Good luck! I was on hold for 55 minutes!! No other corporation in the USA would get away w/ such dispicable customer service Finally got a live person to be told nothing!! Soc Sec.owes ME money since 2012! Why do they take our money w/out hesitation but take forever to return it? Total shame if this is the best our government has to offer its citizens. If the department is so under staffed HIRE more employees!! I have been told there is not a phone in the payment center they can only send emails! How absurd ..it took 4yrs to realize i did not have an over payment and taking forever now get my money they took!! Wish they can try role reversal see how much patience they would have

      • Maggie R.

        Linda-
        Wow, well said! I hope you were able to get your money!

      • Steven B.

        If you believe our government is shite then you’re free to move to another. The SS workforce was cut last year thus making it more difficult to get a hold of someone. Instead of waiting on hold they do give you the choice to have someone call once you’re first in the que. These people deal with other people’s crap on a daily basis even though things are out of their control. Why don’t you try to be a bit nicer the next time you talk to someone. It just may get you what you need/want done.

      • Dave D.

        Social security isn’t a corporation you dolt. It’s a government bureaucracy, hence the atypical wait times.

      • Pat w.

        Same here. And when you go into the office. They tell you the same thing. Just to make you feel, better. And still have to wait.

      • Connie C.

        Oh yes all other corporations get away with it. No one hardly at all uses a phone to answer questions. Everything is done by email and internet now. All applications including employment. The day and age has changed and even unemployment offices teach this now.

    • Amy T.

      Hello I have asked for the correction of my Earnings statement since beginning of March, I supplied everything to show my self-employment earnings for 2 years that show $0. I sent and faxed those years schedule C’s, MY EIN showing I am the sole proprietor, I even sent in the IRS transcripts, as they have my earnings correct, and it shows that I paid my quarterly taxes and even got a refund those years. I did not my husbands name on a couple of the schedule C pages and asked if I needed to amend those tax years. The IRS said no, it is obvious that my husband has the W2 and I have the business, she said it’s easy to figure out. I called SS and they said I had enough proof. Then I get a letter in April saying I did not provide sufficient proof? I then have the CPA amend those years only with the 2 little name issues and the rest is the same. I went in 2 days after the letter and hand delivered everything to her that I sent. She said I had now shown proof, I said please i don’t want to leave here until you tell me yes. The IRS said why don’t they call us. She promised to change right away, then 3 weeks later promises she will change that Wednesday, 3 weeks after that promises to change that friday or next Monday and says she will call me. Nothing. Now three weeks later I leave her another message. BTW I have never gotten a call back from any messages I sent. I do no want to file a grievance because she holds my life in her hands. I have an SSDI cclaim that sits because she bill not change to show credits, thankfully it was just moved on to DDS anyway, but without the Earnings correction who knows what I will get, or anything? I am always polite, always nice on the phone. Does she hate me? It’s been over 120 days. I even sent the request for earnings change for to the Baltimore address, but did not send them the amended return although let them know I had filed amended with name change. That was only about 7 weeks ago. Every person I speak with at SSDI line says they can’t believe it, especially because I have been promised many days it would be completed. They said it takes no time to enter the correction,. they have even sent notes saying what is up? My SSDI case sat for over 2 months because of this. What in the heck can I do. Please advise. Thank you

      • Ray F.

        We apologize for the delay and inconveniences you are experiencing, Amy. Unfortunately, but for your security, we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please continue working with your local office. You should be allowed to speak with the manager to see how we can help to expedite resolution of your situation. If you are unable to visit the local office, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778. Representatives are available Monday through Friday between 7:00a.m. and 7:00p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week.

      • john

        call your congressman.

    • lorie c.

      CALL EARLY IN THE MORNING WHEN THEY OPEN I BELIEVE THEY OPEN AT 8 AM . OR IN THE LATE AFTERNOON AROUND 4;45 PM . HOPE THIS HELPS YOU

      • Ray F.

        Representatives at our toll free number 1-800-772-1213, are available Monday through Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.

        • regina c.

          I am a payee for my son who underage i been calling toll free number cant get threw and it wont let me make an account online how do i report a change in my work status now due to cornavirus

          • Vonda V.

            Hi Regina. We are sorry to hear about your experience. Please be patient when calling us as our available telephone representatives are focusing on some critical workloads. You can also contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information.

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